KEIR Starmer's top team has been hit by a resignation by a member of the shadow cabinet.

Mike Amesbury, the shadow local government minister, announced on Thursday he was stepping down to "put his constituents first". 

The MP for Weaver Vale in Cheshire said it had been an “honour” to serve in Starmer's shadow cabinet but said he could not give his former role "the energy and demand it deserves". 

In his resignation letter, he said: “I am hugely proud of what the team has achieved in the face of a Tory government that ignores the communities that were promised levelling-up, starves local government and public services of the resources they need, and refuses to get a grip on an ever-growing housing crisis.”

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He praised Lisa Nandy, the shadow housing secretary, for “challenging” the Westminster Tory Government “every step of the way”.

Amesbury said “as inflation bites, I will stand shoulder-to-shoulder with all whose only ask is a fair deal for them and their families”.

He added: “I intend to provide this support and voice from the back benches.”

Amesbury, who saw off a Conservative challenge at the 2019 election, told Starmer he wants to see him in Downing Street but said he needs to focus on his constituents.

Amesbury said: “I believe if I am to continue to do so, I am not able to give the role of shadow local government minister the energy it demands and deserves.”

In reply, the Labour leader said he was “sorry” to receive Amesbury’s resignation.

Starmer wrote: “I know you had said before that you wanted to step back from the frontbench to have more time for your constituents, but I am still sorry to receive your resignation and want to thank you for your service.”

He praised Amesbury’s “vital” role on the shadow frontbench team and said he is “grateful for your continuing support”.

The Labour leader was undermined by members of his party after frontbenchers Kate Osborne, Paula Barker and Navendu Mishra defied his order for senior MPs not to join RMT picket lines.

Scottish Labour leader Anas Sarwar was pictured with striking workers at Edinburgh Waverley during the three-day walk out last week.